Public voting open un­til early July

The Compass - - Editorial - BY CHRIS LEWIS chris.lewis@cb­n­com­pass.ca

CON­CEP­TION BAY NORTH, NL — Of the 12 stu­dents from New­found­land tak­ing part in the Young Cit­i­zens pro­gram this year, four hail from Con­cep­tion Bay North.

Ben­jamin Tay­lor, Bri­anna Bar­rett, Shana Brown and Dil­lon Brown are all par­tic­i­pat­ing in this year’s Young Cit­i­zens pro­gram, which fo­cuses on cit­i­zen­ship in the coun­try.

The pro­gram is an an­nual com­po­nent to Her­itage Fairs, an event that has Cana­dian stu­dents re­search­ing Cana­dian le­gends, notable fig­ures, and events through­out his­tory. Stu­dents then present their find­ings at the yearly fair.

The Young Cit­i­zens com­po­nent has stu­dents cre­ate a video de­tail­ing the sub­ject of their Her­itage Fair pro­ject. The video is of­ten pre­sented in the style of a short doc­u­men­tary.

The videos cre­ated by par­tic­i­pants are then posted on­line to the Young Cit­i­zens web­site, where it can be viewed by the public, as well as a num­ber of judges, who all vote on their favourite video.

Win­ners of the Young Cit­i­zens pro­gram are awarded with a trip to On­tario to take part in the Canada’s His­tory Youth Fo­rum.

Videos sub­mit­ted by stu­dents must be less than four min­utes, some­thing Shana Brown of White­way says was dif­fi­cult when cre­at­ing her video.

“When I was first mak­ing the video, there was just so much I wanted to keep in,” Shana told The Com­pass. “So it was hard to bring it down to four min­utes, but I man­aged.”

Shana’s video looks into the me­mories and his­tory as­so­ci­ated with a lot of ob­jects in New­found­land that are no longer put to use in daily life. Through­out her video, she vis­its lo­cal busi­nesses and ex­plains that al­though many items seen through­out New­found­land’s his­tory may not main­tain much mone­tary value, or even prac­ti­cal­ity, the me­mories as­so­ci­ated with them are just as im­por­tant.

An ex­am­ple of this, Shana ex­plained, was the wool sweater she wore through­out her video, which had been handed down from her grand­fa­ther to her father, and then from her father to her.

Ben­jamin Tay­lor of Green’s Har­bour made a video de­tail­ing the great fire of St. John’s that oc­curred in 1892.

Through­out his video, Tay­lor tells the story of the great fire, vis­it­ing var­i­ous lo­ca­tions in St. John’s that had had an im­pact, or had been af­fected by the blazes.

On the Young Cit­i­zens web­site, Tay­lor writes that one of the lessons he learned through his re­search was that no mat­ter what they’re faced with, peo­ple have the abil­ity to per­se­vere and make it through.

Bri­anna Bar­rett, who lives in Old Per­li­can, is tak­ing part in her very last Her­itage Fair this year.

Hav­ing par­tic­i­pated for the past five years, Bar­rett de­cided to make a recap of all the ex­pe­ri­ences she’s had, and things she’s learned through the Her­itage Fair. Her video fo­cuses on the im­por­tance of the fair to stu­dents across Canada.

Bar­rett re­vis­its the past sto­ries and ex­pe­ri­ences she’s had through the Her­itage Fair, say­ing that the fairs both help main­tain his­tory, as well as pro­vide stu­dents with a bet­ter un­der­stand­ing of their homes.

Dil­lon Brown of White­way is also tak­ing part in this year’s Young Cit­i­zens pro­gram. His video de­tails the im­por­tance of in­tan­gi­ble cul­tural her­itage.

In­tan­gi­ble cul­tural her­itage en­com­passes things such as sto­ries, crafts, and songs that can only be passed on through peo­ple, rather than phys­i­cal ob­jects stored in mu­se­ums.

Dil­lon’s video ex­plores var­i­ous as­pects of New­found­land cul­ture such as ty­ing knots and cro­chet – skills that he feels must be passed on, lest they be lost with their gen­er­a­tions.

Leila Brown is Shana and Dil­lon’s mother, and she feels as though the Young Cit­i­zens pro­gram can greatly ben­e­fit stu­dents across the coun­try.

“It re­ally helps young peo­ple learn about their home, where they come from, and the cul­ture be­hind it all,” ex­plained Leila. “Even the stu­dents that don’t get to go to On­tario, they’ve still learned some­thing im­por­tant. That’s go­ing to stick with them for­ever.”

There are around 200 stu­dents across Canada in­volved in the pro­gram, but only 26 of them will be awarded a trip to On­tario to at­tend the Canada’s His­tory Youth Fo­rum.

A panel of judges will vote and de­cide on 50 per cent of the win­ners, while public voting will be used to de­ter­mine the re­main­ing 50 per cent.

Public voting be­gan on June 12, and will end at mid­night on July 7.

Videos done by stu­dents can be found at www.kids.canadashis­tory.ca.

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